Everywhere the Prime Minister turns, he seems to be confronted with the symbolism of pending defeat.
Kevin Rudd yesterday trooped to northern Tasmania, where Labor is battling to hold two seats.
As he toured the University of Tasmania’s nursing school, promising $28 million if he wins, Mr Rudd held his news conference in a classroom filled with bags of fake blood on a drip and plastic limbs with brutal stab wounds.
It must have felt like home for Mr Rudd and the head-nodding Labor MPs standing behind him.
He also inspected a mock intensive care ward where Carl, a high-tech dummy, was the “patient” suffering the symptoms of respiratory illness for the trainee nurses to treat.
Fortunately, Carl was going to pull through, the supervisor assured us.
He has more of a pulse than Mr Rudd’s campaign.
Bad luck dogged another day on the hustings.
He planned to sweep through Launceston, Devonport and then to Geelong but was forced to cancel the latter leg because thick fog made it impossible for his VIP plane to land at Devonport to pick him up for the flight across Bass Strait.
Earlier in Brisbane, his predilection for selfies came a cropper when he and group of 20 young volunteers posed for a picture just a couple of metres away from a homeless man sleeping on a bench.
The Ruddy army had gone for a walk along the river and did not notice the man in his sleeping bag and worldly possessions as they snapped away.
As the campaign enters its dying days, Mr Rudd nevertheless seems determined to show there is a bit of life left in him.
There was his passionate slap down of a Christian pastor’s ‘homosexuality is against the Bible’ mentality on Q&A on Monday night.
And he also made clear carbon pricing is an article of faith for Labor. While it was hypothetical to consider whether Labor in opposition would allow Tony Abbott to repeal the carbon tax, the PM gave every sign the party would not back down.
Perhaps Mr Rudd hopes by taking a principled stand he will show it is better to die on your feet than live on your knees.